Book Review: Wicked – The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West

Posted on July 19, 2014 in Review / 0 Comments



Series: The Wicked Years (Book One)

Published: December 5, 200

Page Count: 406

Genre: Fantasy, Science Fiction, Adult, Witches, Magic

Read Count: Once

Duration: June 27th – July 3rd

Rated? Five Stars

When Dorothy triumphed over the Wicked Witch of the West in L. Frank Baum’s classic tale, we heard only her side of the story. But what about her arch-nemesis, the mysterious Witch? Where did she come from? How did she become so wicked? And what is the true nature of evil?

Gregory Maguire creates a fantasy world so rich and vivid that we will never look at Oz the same way again. Wicked is about a land where animals talk and strive to be treated like first-class citizens, Munchkinlanders seek the comfort of middle-class stability, and the Tin Man becomes a victim of domestic violence. And then there is the little green-skinned girl named Elphaba, who will grow up to become the infamous Wicked Witch of the West, a smart, prickly, and misunderstood creature who challenges all our preconceived notions about the nature of good and evil.


Definitely not what I expected, but I couldn’t put it down.

I wasn’t sure what to think of this book. It has been on my to-read list for years, and I’ve for whatever reason effectively avoided it in all that time. I saw the musical in Boston in 2006 and I think first it’s imperative to understand that this book is not the musical. The only real following similarities are the setting – Oz – and the character names. The story plays out completely differently.

That said, I could not put it down.

The story follows Elphaba from before birth to the moment of her death. The life shown is uncensored and completely different than one may have expected. It is rough, sexual, and ruthless. And somehow, it is just right.

The main criticism I would have is that the ending seemed rushed, as though her insanity set in far too quickly, and in that, I would say I felt left unsatisfied.

Find it on: Amazon, Goodreads, Barnes & Noble.
Available on Kindle & Nook.


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